We have this tub on the first floor that drains to a pipe that is also shar
ed by the kitchen sink and the dishwasher. Over time sediment builds up an
d sometimes the tub backs up and I see gravel and nasty stuff in the tub an
d in the past I have been able to snake out the tub.
It backed up yesterday and there was a bunch of gravel and nasty looking st
uff in the tub.
Last night I was working on it and had a very hard time getting the snake p
ast a certain point but eventually I got it extended pretty far and I thoug
ht it would have unclogged the drain. But when I pulled the snake back out
the tub is still almost totally stopped up. If I put water in it will sit
there for a long time and eventually it does seep through whatever is clog
ging the pipe.
This morning I am back at it and I just cannot get the snake past a certain
point and it's not very far. After about 5 feet it just cannot make any p
I am using a hand crank snake but it has worked pretty well for me in the p
I'm getting ready to call a plumber here.
Would appreciate any tips on how to get past whatever is preventing the sna
ke from making progress.
Thanks in advance.
New model has a 220 VAC motor, and plugs in to
the kitchen range socket, so it has lots of power.
I was going to suggest crank in one direction,
then the other. Some times a left crank will
go places a right crank will not.
One time I did snake a kitchen drain. Took a LOT
of cable, and aparently had a hard time going
around a couple elbows. But, persistence got
through. It did not properly paid off. I worked
on it three hours. Asked the guy for $50, he
handed me $15. I explained. That got another
$5. He said only "I got bills to pay". And I
will never work for that guy again.
On 02/19/2016 05:59 AM, email@example.com wrote:
To get this fixed properly you will have to determine where the gravel
is coming from and take preventative measures to avoid a re-occurrence.
Whatever gravel is in there will have to be removed, which will probably
entail opening up the pipe and cleaning or replacing a section.
This very well may be a job for a plumber and it will undoubtedly cost a
bit of cash. If you call a plumber see if you can get a recommendation
from a friend, their integrity can certainly vary.
I am not a plumber, and I hate plumbing. That said there might be a few
things to look at. Sometimes there is an access plug on the drain pipe.
Often they are on the exterior of the house and allow the drain pipe to
be cleaned out. Secondly, you might be better to access the problem
tub drain via one of the other contributors, such as the kitchen sink or
washing machine drain. They often have more open access than do tubs.
Clearing out these drains might also open up the tub. Lastly you might
try using the overflow of the tub to access the tub drain rather than
the drain opening. Not likely to be better from your description, but
worth a try.
I will say however that if you truly are pulling out gravel, that is not
a good omen. Unless you are putting gravel into the kitchen or other drain.
It's not actual gravel. It's just the kind of stuff that builds up in the
pipes over time. Sediment would have been a better description.
The problem is there is this old piece of pipe that the tub, kitchen sink,
and dishwasher feed into. That needs to be replaced with PVC pipe at some
point and this will stop happening. Should have done this before we finish
ed the basement because now it would involve tearing out some sheetrock to
get at that pipe.
For now I will try to snake it out. The last time I had a plumber come out
and give it a good snaking it lasted about 2 years and then it clogged aga
in. I've got a screen in the kitchen sink to keep food out but I guess ove
r time stuff still builds up.
Very strange. Maybe someone can explain to me what happened here.
I finally got the snake to feed through again. I extended it the full 25 feet. It was moving pretty freely through the pipe so I thought I must have unclogged it. The kitchen sink was draining fine with no back up.
But the tub was still clogged and would not drain.
So I got the plunger out and put it right over the bottom drain in the tub and I pushed down. I saw some sediment come out the overflow drain where I had been snaking and all of a sudden the tub drained instantly.
I guess the clog must have been before the point at which I was snaking through the overflow drain.
Saved myself a few bucks and tomorrow's my birthday!
Thanks for the feedback.
On Friday, February 19, 2016 at 8:11:33 AM UTC-5, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
re: "I guess the clog must have been before the point at which I was
snaking through the overflow drain."
In your OP you did not mention that you were snaking through the overflow.
Have you been using the overflow since the beginning of this specific clog?
If so, then yes, I think I would agree that this clog was between the tub
drain and the connection to the overflow pipe.
However, if you have *always* used the overflow to clear the "over time"
buildups, then this instance must have been different. This is not clear
based on your OP vs. your most recent post.
That said, as you can see from this image, the length of pipe from the
tub drain to the "downspout" of the overflow is not very long.
It makes me wonder what you are putting down the drain that is causing a
clog in that short length of pipe. When you pulled the stopper out of the
overflow, was it covered with hair and soap scum? If so, maybe the linkage
is set too long and it is partially blocking the drain and not letting
debris pass through smoothly.
I don't know how big the holes in your drain cover are, but I've seen some
that a golf ball could fit through. ;-) Maybe you could try a cover with
smaller holes so that hair (if that's the issue) collect on top of the drain
and can be removed after each shower instead of being allowed to go down the
drain and get caught up.
On Friday, February 19, 2016 at 9:25:00 AM UTC-5, DerbyDad03 wrote:
25 feet. It was moving pretty freely through the pipe so I thought I must
have unclogged it. The kitchen sink was draining fine with no back up.
tub and I pushed down. I saw some sediment come out the overflow drain whe
re I had been snaking and all of a sudden the tub drained instantly.
through the overflow drain.
I always snake through the overflow. I don't think it is possible to snake
through the drain at the bottom of the tub. When I watched the plumbers d
o it they always go through the overflow so that's what I have always done.
I think the problem getting the snake through was just related to a U joint
that I was having a hard time getting the snake around.
I think what happened is that when the water backed up into the tub it push
ed a bunch of sediment up into that short pipe you mentioned. So even thou
gh I had the main pathway cleared out there was still that small clog. The
image you posted makes it really clear. Thanks for posting that.
I think I actually had it snaked out last night but I didn't think of tryin
g the plunger until this morning. Always better to wait for morning when c
learer heads prevail!
I just took a shower and it's draining really well again. Better than it h
as in months.
The holes in that bottom drain are pretty small. An awful lot of hair is g
oing down that drain though. Both my wife and daughter take a lot of showe
r's in there and the hair is a problem.
Nice to be back in business and not sitting around waiting for the plumber
with my check book.
On Friday, February 19, 2016 at 9:59:46 AM UTC-5, email@example.com wrote:
l 25 feet. It was moving pretty freely through the pipe so I thought I mus
t have unclogged it. The kitchen sink was draining fine with no back up.
e tub and I pushed down. I saw some sediment come out the overflow drain w
here I had been snaking and all of a sudden the tub drained instantly.
ng through the overflow drain.
ke through the drain at the bottom of the tub. When I watched the plumbers
do it they always go through the overflow so that's what I have always don
nt that I was having a hard time getting the snake around.
shed a bunch of sediment up into that short pipe you mentioned. So even th
ough I had the main pathway cleared out there was still that small clog. Th
e image you posted makes it really clear. Thanks for posting that.
ing the plunger until this morning. Always better to wait for morning when
clearer heads prevail!
has in months.
going down that drain though. Both my wife and daughter take a lot of sho
wer's in there and the hair is a problem.
r with my check book.
On the rare occasions that my ladies clog the shower they use, I have
access to the drain via an access panel in the hallway. All I need to do
is loosen a couple of nuts and a Fernco connector to basically remove the
entire drain from the tub. This makes it really easy to remove the dead rat
err...I mean, the clump of soap scum covered hair. Thanks goodness for
vinyl gloves. ;-)
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